Ingmar Guandique is likely to get a new trial in the 2001 killing of federal intern Chandra Levy after prosecutors dropped their opposition to defense efforts to have a new jury hear the case, the Washington Post reports. Attorneys for Guandique, 34, have argued that a key witness in the 2010 trial lied when he testified that Guandique, his onetime cellmate, confessed to him that he killed Levy. Defense attorneys contend they should have been told that the witness, a convicted drug dealer and gang member, had been cooperating with prosecutors in other cases. They said he made up the alleged confession from Guandique to gain favor with prosecutors.
Levy, 24, went missing May 1, 2001, and her remains were found a year later. Her disappearance and killing emerged as one of Washington's most sensational murder cases when it was discovered that she had had an affair with U.S. Rep. Gary Condit, who was cleared in the case. There was no forensic evidence linking Guandique, a gang member, to the crime scene, no murder weapon, no eyewitness and no definitive ruling from the medical examiner on what killed Levy. At Guandique's sentencing, Judge Gerald. Fisher imposed a 60-year prison term but noted that the government's case “wasn't a very strong” one.